NEMAH — Longtime Nemah resident Giro Nakagawa passed away peacefully on Oct. 28, 2015, at the age of 94. Giro was born March 15, 1921, in Seattle, Wash., one of 12 children born to hardworking immigrant parents Genichi and Itsuyo Nakagawa. Giro attended Kent High School, playing guard for their football team, which was #2 in the state.
Upon graduating in 1939, Giro moved to Willapa Bay to work the oyster beds from a station house for the New Washington Oyster Company, working his first 100 days straight. Giro worked there sending most of his 70 cents an hour wages home to his family until 1942, when he was forced to relocate to an internment camp in Pinedale, Calif., by Executive Order 9066. Enlisting in the U.S. Army, Giro served his country during WWII in the Counter Intelligence Corp, ultimately stationed in Korea.
Upon discharge, Giro returned to the land and the life he loved as an oysterman with the New Washington Oyster Company and Bay Center Mariculture, and as a primary developer of Lynn Point Properties.
Giro married Miyo in Portland, Ore., in 1958, remaining close to his large extended family while raising his own, and forging friendships throughout the Pacific Northwest. He was active with Masonic Lodge Gavel 48, Afifi Temple (Shriners), Hoquiam Valley Scottish Rite, Order of the Eastern Star, Raymond American Legion, Japanese American Citizens League, and a lifetime member of the Nisei Veterans Committee in Seattle. An avid sports fan and outdoorsman, Giro enjoyed bowling, golfing, hunting, fishing, birdwatching and following local high school and regional sports.
Giro was preceded in death by sisters Toshiko, Masako, Betty and Kiku, and brothers Fred, Sam, Harry, and Hank. He is survived by his wife Miyo; son Michael (Linda and Obie); son Byron; daughter and son-in-law Noreen & Pat; grandchildren Mia and Danny; brothers Kaz, George and Ben, and numerous nieces, nephews and grand nieces and nephews.
It is said we carve our names on hearts, not tombstones. That a legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you. Memories of Giro are being collected for the family at firstname.lastname@example.org. Celebrations of Giro’s life will be held Saturday, Nov. 14 at 1 p.m. at the Willapa Harbor Community Center, 916 W. First Street, South Bend, WA 98586 and Saturday, Nov. 21 at 1 p.m. at the Seattle Nisei Veteran’s Hall, 1212 S King St, Seattle, WA 98144.
Cremation arrangements were in care of Stoller’s Mortuary in Raymond. You may visit www.StollersMortuary.com to leave condolences for the family.